On art and medicine: I see them as a single body of work, which involves witnessing and storytelling and having accountability to the things that I see as a physician, artist, and thinker. The expression in the music we present is different than what I bring into the clinical dynamic, but my work is motivated by the same desire to engage, to witness and understand, and, hopefully, to move things into a dynamic of positive action and lessened suffering.
On expression: The kind of touring I like to do, the mix of presenting music while getting our hands dirty with social inquiry, is influenced by the skills I learn from medicine—critical analysis and continuing to develop the ability to talk about difficult things with grace, urgent directness, and hope.
On activism and engagement: I'm excited about physicians and other healthcare providers being social activators, learning how to use their expertise to empower the communities we work for, using our voices to reflect what we witness at the level of each individual patient and the level of society. There's something magical that happens when people participate in ameliorating dynamics that cause suffering on a large scale versus remaining passive.
This article appears in the January/February 2013 issue of HealthLeaders magazine.